QR Codes: What It’s All About


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QR Codes are simply a gateway between the physical and digital world in order to engage consumers in interactive brand communication that deepens the marketing message, strengthens brand loyalty and drives customer conversions. Discover the best way to use this emerging technology in your marketing and communications plans with the goal of acquiring, maintaining and growing customers more effectively and efficiently.

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  • They consist of black modules on a white background.When a smartphone reads a QR code, it will then send the user to a webpage. Think of a QR code as a physical bookmark to a virtual webpage.
  • Social media is an “umbrella term that defines the various activities that integrate technology, social interaction , and the construction of words, pictures, videos, and audio.
  • The most important thing to do is to provide an awesome experience. Incorporate images, audio, video, and interactivity into the website that your 2D bar codes links, as these components can’t all be duplicated on paper. This experience needs to reflect the marketing and usage strategy. Make sure you’re engaging the person scanning your code in a way that provides a stimulating visual and audio experience. If you don’t, you can bet your competitors will.Breaking the rule.A poster for Jacobs Creek wine and the opportunity to win tickets to the Australian open. The 2D bar codes resolved to the non-mobilized company website with a linked banner proclaiming “Mobile phone users click here for the Australian open promotion”. That link too went to a non-mobilized page! (The link and offending page has now been removed).Keeping the rule.Fendi has also chosen to use a 2D bar codes that decodes to their main site url http://www.fendi.com. However if you are accessing the site with a mobile device they are using user agent detection to redirect to their mobile website http://mobile.fendi.com/. The Fendi mobile site is quite comprehensive and gives a choice of languages, Italian or English.
  • QR Codes are an efficient and artistic-looking way of storing data. Try to store the least amount of data possible by using short URLs. This makes a code easier to scan, and a less cluttered code is more visually appealing. There are a number of good (and free) URL shorteners online, such as bit.ly, goo.gl, and tinyurl.com. For added features, try memurl.com, which creates easy-to-remember mnemonic links, or dwarfurl.com, which uses advanced statistics to track the traffic to your site. Use these services to clean up your codes and make it easier for the people who want to scan them.Breaking the rule.The 2D bar codes in this advertisement for Ralph Lauren in New York magazine decodes as http://m.ralphlauren.com/default.aspx?ab=nym, an unnecessarily long url. The 2D bar codes could have been smaller and encoded with a higher level of error correction (ECL) if a urlshortener had been used, such as http://3.ly/9Xe.Keeping the rule.When Dicks Sporting Goods launched their new m-commerce site with a giant 2D bar codes at a ball game, they did not use a subdomain of their existing site. They chose instead to use a new domain and a much shorter url http://dsports.mobi/ which encoded as a smaller 2D bar codes.
  • A 2D bar code is like a scratch-off card — people have to apply some effort to engage, so the payoff better be worth it. Content emanating from a QR code needs to be useful or an easy redemption of an exclusive reward. Don’t use it to repeat things you’ve already said. Use the code to get to the next step in the customer engagement cycle. Successful marketing is goal oriented and measured with quantifiable metrics. Once you know what your goal is for the 2D bar codes, you need to make sure that the content backs that up and helps accomplish that goal. At the same time, you need to make sure you have a system in place to track how the 2D bar codes is affecting traffic to your site. That way, you’ll know if you’re placing the code in a suitable location or if the code should be moved.Breaking the rule.Siemans latest newspaper advertisements has a 2D bar codes that resolves to a url where the reward for reaching the “Climate change and energy supply” section of Siemens global mobile website is a series of short paragraphs on combined-cycle power plants, HVDC transmission lines and performance contracting. These are about as exciting as watching paint dry. Where is the engagement? Where is the climate change and energy supply game/quiz with prizes, for example? If someone has gone to the trouble of decoding your 2D bar codes the last thing they want to see is bland content, instead give then something valuable.Keeping the rule.The good things about this Suntory 2D bar codes are firstly it’s on a beer can :), secondly the 2D bar codes resolves to a mobile site where visitors can offset 100g of CO2 once per day and feel good about it and thirdly there is a daily lottery with the chance of winning cash prizes. In other words, valuable content that engages the visitor and makes the decoding of the 2D bar codes worthwhile.
  • Make sure to put your 2D bar codes in a place people can use them. This means thinking through where people will be scanning your codes and making sure the code is easy to access. Excellent placement options include newspaper or magazine pages, flyers or other promotional literature, and easy-to-spot locations on your website. Putting a 2D bar codes online is a good move to direct traffic to your website, but make sure the customer can easily find the code—place it on the top of the page or fixed in the margin, for example. Don’t make people jump through hoops to scan your code. Make it accessible and easy to use.Breaking the rule.The advertisement ran on the right hand side of a magazine. By placing the 2D bar code in the upper left of the advertisement, readers were unable to easily scan the code due to the fact is was in the crease. Keeping the rule.The advertisement for the movie Brides Maids wan on the right hand side of a magazine as well. But this time, the 2D bar code was placed on the right hand side of the advertisement allowing for easy scanning.
  • 2D bar codes are far from ubiquitous. Give people directions on how to use them. The directions don’t need to be complicated; “Scan this code with your phone” should suffice. Providing information on how to download the appropriate scanning app helps take things a step further and makes sure you’re not losing people who might benefit from scanning your code. Don’t assume that everyone has the ability to scan 2D bar codes. Not everyone has a smartphone, and some people who do may have broken cameras, uncharged phones, no service, or other technical difficulties. Provide a short URL that people can type in manually (or easily remember) if they are unable or unwilling to scan your code. The idea is to make things as easy to use for as many people as possible. Offering a simple fallback method makes sure you’re maximizing who sees the additional content to which you link your QR Code.Breaking the rule.The above card tries to engage a customer by predicting their future. And the customer needs to scan the card to receive their prediction. What if the customer does not have a smartphone? What if they don’t have a reader? In the end you are running the risk of frustrating your customer, alienating them to future marketing efforts.Keeping the rule.Scan this code with your mobile phone or view online at bit.ly/12345. To download the Tag reader, text TAG to 71857. Simple text that let’s the user know what to do, how to get the reader and most important, how to view without a smartphone.
  • Scans BarcodesBook jacketsAlbums
  • QR Codes: What It’s All About

    1. 1. Gettingpractical withsocial mediaagain.
    4. 4. WHO’S USING THEMRalph LaurenDisneyPoloColdwell BankerTargetER+MedStatsU.S. Post OfficeWho’s not
    5. 5. BUT WHATIS A QRCODEA QR, or QuickRe s p o n s e c o d e ,is a 2D barcoded ete c t a b l e b y abarcode readerapp on asmartphone.
    6. 6.  2D bar code are an easy and virtually free way to increase contacts, producing results quickly and make a positive influence on your bottom line. BUT WHAT A 2D bar codes strategically located in IS A QR your store can drive traffic to the exact CODE place on your website or other social A QR, or Quick media outlets. Re s p o n s e c o d e , is a 2D bar If you have coupons, use a 2D bar code codes to help drive traffic to the page d ete c t a b l e b y a on your website with the coupons. barcode reader app on a 2D bar codes can also increase your smartphone. customer base by offering exclusive incentives to new customers. If used correctly, 2D bar codes can give your business the boost it needs.
    7. 7. HOW ARE COMPANIES USING THEM?  To g row m a i ling a n d tex t m e s s age l i st s — In s to re di re c t c us to m e r s to a l a n ding pa g e w h e re t h ey c a n s i g n up fo r a c o upo n by g i v ing t h e i r e m a il a ddre s s .  To i n c re a se t h e ave ra g e i n - s tore purc h a s e — Exc lusive da i l y i n - s tore s pe c i als a c c e s sible fo rm a 2 D ba r c o de .  To a t t ra c t a t te n t i o n —Companies a re put t i n g 2 D ba r c o de s i n publ i c a re a s w i t h bui l t - i n c a l l - to -ac t ion. Th ey a re a l s o a ppe a ri n g o n bus i n ess c a rds , i nvo ices, fl i e r s, o r eve n i n e m a i ls.  Th e c us to m e r s o f to day n e e d a ddi t i onal re a s o n s to pay a t te n t i o n to yo ur a dve r t i sement s. 2 D ba r c o de s a dd t h i s e l e m ent a n d w i l l e n g a ge c us to m er s m o re th a n oth e r fo rm s o f a dve r t i s ing.
    8. 8. 5 SIMPLE TIPS
    9. 9. 1. MOBILIZE THE LANDING PAGE Breaking the rule Keeping the rule
    10. 10. 2. KEEP THE URL SHORTBreaking the rule Keeping the rule
    11. 11. 3. MAKE THE CONTENT VALUABLE Breaking the rule Keeping the rule
    12. 12. 4. LOCATION MATTERSBreaking the rule Keeping the rule
    13. 13. 5. TELL PEOPLE HOW TO USE ITBreaking the rule Keeping the rule
    14. 14. OTHER NOTES TO BE MINDFUL OF Call to action  Purposeful content Test, test, test  Text msg Minimum 1.25”  Website URL (recommended)  YouTube video  Telephone number Respect the boarder  Vcard One code per piece to  Google map avoid confusion  PayPal “Buy Now” link  Social media sign up  iTunes link  Basic sign up forms
    15. 15. SOME EXAMPLES
    16. 16. OK, HOW DO I GET ONE
    18. 18. WHAT’S NEXT
    19. 19. GOOGLE SHOPPER
    20. 20. GOOGLE GOGGLE
    21. 21. GOOGLE GOGGLE